11/11 GHR Check-In

This is the final month of the Groundhog Day Resolution system for 2019. This was the 11th annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered that because of the after the end-of-year holidays I am not mentally or physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect
and plan. The idea here was to check in every month from 2/2, 3/3, etc to 11/11- today!

So how’d I do this year?

Physical

  • The immediate goal is to drop 25 pounds quick. Besides the typical
    motto of  “Eat clean, train mean, get lean”, I’m throwing in some activities that should help. This was a fail. In fact, I have gained unhealthy weight.
  • Kickboxing/sparring with Tracy. Not one much thrown.
  • Dance lessons. Something fun like Swing? Sexy, like Bachata? We’ll figure it out. Not one lesson. We dance around the house and at the pub but that’s it.
  • Disc Golf. Time to get back into it. Less expensive than golf and I don’t have to wear baggy, plaid pants. We tossed the disk around a bit but nothing consistent. I made a brilliant 1/1000 shot though so yeah.
  • Yoga/Meditation. I had some moderate usage last year but not enough to form a habit. I did appreciate the quiet time to breathe, relax and focus on nothing. Again, not habit forming but I enjoy the process. Why can’t I make time for simple things?

Technical

  • Learn Python. Only one tech goal this year because I get scattered and end up not learning anything. No more. Time to learn and apply data science and machine learning applications. I wrote a few lines of code and then realized I don’t need to. I wasn’t interested. What was I going to do with it? Next year I may write Swift instead but only for the hell of it.

Artistical

  • Sketch/Draw/Doodle. I bought an iPad and pencil last year and I want to be more creative. Nope.
  • Learn Spanish with Tracy. Nope.
  • Learn Chinese. For myself. Nope.
  • Learn to play the ukulele. I grabbed one late last year but with the holidays in the way it took a back seat. Nope.
  • DAM- Digital Asset Management, or, where the hell are my photos from that shoot last month? They are all (almost) on to a new 10TB hard drive waiting on me. Progress.
  • Write short stories. I have a ton of ideas for these. Progress, but only this month of NANOWRIMO.
  • Write micro fiction. One hundred word stories. Nope. Change this for NANOWRIMO?
  • Work on that novel. Its been ten plus years and I still can’t get all of this out of my head. Progress, but only this month of NANOWRIMO.
  • 52 week photo challenge . 52 weeks in a year = 52 photos I think this died around week 9.

Financial

  • Order a credit report and start settling some debts for less. 2017 was not a good year and it hurt me financially so I am slowly recovering. This year will be dedicated to resolving this and restoring my good name. Progress! My credit scores dropped a bit at first but are slowly going up. Not fast enough for me though.
  • Build credit with a secured credit card. Doing this now.
  • Automate savings and track investments. Yes, there is an app for that and it is called Acorns. Nope.
  • Cryptocurrency. This year I will dip a toe into these unknown waters. Bitcoin? Ethereum? Research is crucial here. Nope. Not interested anymore.

Overall, I’d rate this year’s GHD Resolutions as failure. In fact, I am thinking of scrapping the whole concept in favor of focusing on one thing a month and practice. That should be habit forming, no? But knowing me, I tend to bounce from thing to thing randomly or as I get bored.

The portrait photography was big this year but as I’ve stated previously I am slowly pulling away from these types of shoots and want to try photographing something else with different methods. Still working these out. But the takeaway is that portrait photography was the culprit that a majority of these resolutions failed.

7/7 GHR Check-In

This is my fifth month. How am I doing so far?

Time to review my progress from this past month. This is the 11th
annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered
that because of the after the end-of-year holidays I am not mentally or
physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new
year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect
and plan.

Let me summarize this post for you: It’s been mostly photography and portrait sessions this month. After that? Little else!

Physical
Nope.

Yoga/Meditation:

Uh-uh

Technical
Learn Python: New computer is setup and so is Python again. Its even more of a challenge when learning Mac keyboard commands and shortcuts

Artistical
Sketching, drawing, doodling: Nope
Learn Spanish: Nope
Learn Chinese: Nope
Learn to play the ukulele: a little

DAM- Digital Asset Management: Nope
Write short stories. Raw. Coming soon
Write micro fiction: nope
Work on that novel: Progress on Angkor!
52 week challenge: fail

Financial:
Nope

See you back here on 8/8 for the next review of how I do!

6/6 GHR Check-In

This is my fourth month. How am I doing so far?

Time to review my progress from this past month. This is the 11th
annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered
that because of the after the end-of-year holidays I am not mentally or
physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new
year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect
and plan.

Physical
Disc Golf is hit and miss lately thanks to a lot of the courses being flooded the past month but we take em where we can play em.

Yoga/Meditation: Progress. I now know why they call it yoga “practice”. Have to keep trying. 

Technical
Learn Python: New computer is setup and so is Python again. Its even more of a challenge when learning Mac keyboard commands and shortcuts

Artistical
Sketching, drawing, doodling: Some improvement. Learning how shading works 
Learn Spanish: nope
Learn Chinese: nope
Learn to play the ukulele: nope

DAM- Digital Asset Management: Haven’t been shooting
Write short stories. Raw. Coming soon
Write micro fiction: nope
Work on that novel: Progress on Angkor!
52 week challenge: fail

Financial:
Significant progress here but the credit score is going backwards a little bit. Does that seem right to you?

See you back here on 7/7 for the next review of how I do!

4/4 GHR Check-In!

This is my third month. How am I doing?

Time to review my progress from this past month. This is the 11th
annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered
that because of the after the end-of-year holidays I am not mentally or
physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new
year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect
and plan.

Physical
Dance lessons. Not yet!
Kickboxing/sparring: Not yet!
Disc Golf. Grabbed a disc set! Two drivers, one mid and one putter. Time to hit the course this weekend.

Yoga/Meditation: Progress. I now know why they call it yoga “practice”. Have to keep trying.

Technical
Learn Python: Haven’t touched it once this month

Artistical
Sketching, drawing, doodling: Once. And it sucked 
Learn Spanish: nope
Learn Chinese: nope
Learn to play the ukulele: nope

DAM- Digital Asset Management: Haven’t been shooting
Write short stories. nope
Write micro fiction: nope
Work on that novel: nope
52 week challenge: fail

Financial:
nope

To answer the post’s original question: meh. Uninspired due to this new job I started a month ago.Now that I have a set schedule and warmer weather is consistent…I am out of excuses. See you back here on 5/5 for the next review of how I do!

3/3 GHR Check-In!

Time to review my progress from this past month. This is the 11th annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered that because of the after the end-of-year holidays I am not mentally or physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect and plan.

Physical
Dance lessons. We’re leaning towards country dancing. I’ll see what I can do to change that.
Kickboxing/sparring: Can you believe my gym has only one class a week? Yep, I call BS too. Guess we’ll have to do this at home.
Disc Golf. Waiting on warmer weather
Yoga/Meditation: Still not a habit but I am enjoying this more. There is a yoga studio nearby and classes at the gym.
All of this with a goal to drop 25 pounds. My motto will be “Eat clean, train mean, get lean”. Three pounds so far. That recent road trip didn’t help.

Technical
Learn Python: Not the data scientist yet but there is some lessons learned.

///Print (“Hello World!”)

Artistical
Sketching, drawing, doodling: learned some tips and tricks on using the Pencil. Shading, pressure, etc. 
Learn Spanish: “Mi nombre es Chris Denbow”
Learn Chinese: “Ni hao, wo de minzi jio Chris Denbow”
Learn to play the ukulele: I picked up the instrument once this month, tuned it and then moved on to something else.

DAM- Digital Asset Management: Progress! The new year allowed me to start fresh, purge and then organize the keepers into months. Granted, only two months but there were a lot of photos so far.
Write short stories. “He had seen a lot of incredible sights when working with his camera over the years. But nothing like this and certainly nothing he wanted to see ever again.”
Write micro fiction: Micro fiction or flash fiction? I’m on the fence as to what to call it. Haven’t done it though.
Work on that novel: Or not. Still overwhelmed.
52 week challenge: Number 9 out of 52 has been completed

Financial:

Order a credit report and start settling some debts for less.This has been done and am currently disputing some items that should not be on there. Got a few knocked off. Yay.
Build credit with a secured credit card: Done!

See you back here on 4/4 for the next review of how I do!

Now Developing

Picking up the Python programming language is going smoother than most of the other languages I have attempted to learn so far. If I am going to become a full stack developer I need to get in the habit of using best practices such as…

1. Developing a working solution by solving a problem.

2. Work it out first either by using pen/paper or a mind map app.

3. Utilize an up-to-date Integrated Development Environment (IDE)

4. Master at least one language

5. Keep it simple

6. Ask questions. Reach out to others to learn from.

7. Utilize Github more often. Submit several more pull requests.

8. Brush up on my Linux skills (installed on my machine via VirtualBox.)

9. Look up terms I don’t understand.

10. Read up on current trends

Developing these habits, I believe, will allow me to…develop.

Limits

This past week I have relocated to a new home. A home without Internet service. For the first time since 1996 I do not have an ISP and it feels like I am in the damned dark ages.

How is it possible for me to learn the Python programming language without it? How is it possible for me to load processed photo images to the cloud and other platforms? By finding solutions and alternatives.

By choosing not to have internet service, I am discovering a more productive lifestyle, reducing mindless surfing and wasting time and with alternate resources.

Here’s what I mean: streaming entertainment is non-existent so we’re going old school videos by using a disc player. Quaint, right? Physical books as opposed to digital books. Neato. 

The pros of no service are outweighing the cons so far because of limited distractions. I can focus on reading more and writing a short story. Heck, I may even get to that long overdue novel.The Python IDLE (Integrated Development Environment) works brilliantly off line. Photo processing can be done without internet as well. Speaking of photos, I took advantage of great weather for a long overdue photo walk. Offline and IRL. Another offline option is learning how to play that ukulele eventually. 

When I do have access (thanks Panera, public library, iPhone XR hot spot), I can then upload, download as needed. In fact, I just downloaded some e-books for fun reading as well as a technical manual for Python.

By limiting myself I have found an opportunity. And just like my mother always said “Be prepared to take advantage of the opportunity.”

* This post was written offline and then later uploaded via hotspot. 

Groundhog Resolution Day 2019!

Its that time of year again. The 11th annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered that because of the after the end-of-year holidays I am not mentally or physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect and plan.

So the kickoff is today on 2/2! My resolutions, goals and life-changing habits are listed below. These are not to be confused with items on my “F*%k It List”.  I will check in every month and then review my progress. Next check-in is on March 3 (3/3). After that will be 4/4, 5/5 and so on. Here we go!

Physical

The immediate goal is to drop 25 pounds quick. Besides the typical
motto of  “Eat clean, train mean, get lean”, I’m throwing in some activities that should help.

  • Kickboxing/sparring with Tracy

  • Dance lessons. Something fun like Swing? Sexy, like Bachata? We’ll figure it out.
  • Disc Golf. Time to get back into it. Less expensive than golf and I don’t have to wear baggy, plaid pants. 
  • Yoga/Meditation. I had some moderate usage last year but not enough to form a habit. I did appreciate the quiet time to breathe, relax and focus on nothing.

Technical

  • Learn Python. Only one tech goal this year because I get scattered and end up not learning anything. No more. Time to learn and apply data science and machine learning applications.


Artistical

  • Sketch/Draw/Doodle. I bought an iPad and pencil last year and I want to be more creative.
  • Learn Spanish with Tracy.
  • Learn Chinese. For myself. 
  • Learn to play the ukulele. I grabbed one late last year but with the holidays in the way it took a back seat. 
  • DAM- Digital Asset Management, or, where the hell are my photos from that shoot last month?
  • Write short stories. I have a ton of ideas for these.
  • Write micro fiction. One hundred word stories.
  • Work on that novel. Its been ten plus years and I still can’t get all of this out of my head. 
  • 52 week photo challenge. 52 weeks in a year = 52 photos


Financial

  • Order a credit report and start settling some debts for less. 2017 was not a good year and it hurt me financially so I am slowly recovering. This year will be dedicated to resolving this and restoring my good name. 
  • Build credit with a secured credit card.
  • Automate savings and track investments. Yes, there is an app for that and it is called Acorns. 
  • Cryptocurrency. This year I will dip a toe into these unknown waters. Bitcoin? Ethereum? Research is crucial here.

Knowing myself all too well, I may end up adding or subtracting this or that. Either way, I’ll check back in here on 3/3 for the first review of how I do!

12/12 GHR Check-In!

This is the final check in of the year where I evaluate the progress on my Groundhog Resolutions. This is the 10th
annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered
that right after the end of the year holidays I am not mentally or
physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new
year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect
and plan and start on 2/2 instead of 1/1.

After today I will take a break until next Groundhog’s Day (2/2/19).

Fun-

Get another tattoo: Coming soon #fail

More camping: Had more than a few great camping misadventures this year!

More skinny dipping: Think I’ll have to skip that this year

Learn Spanish more fluently: Downloaded the Duolingo app for practice but haven’t used it. Will work with the MissAdventurer

Join a book club: No decent bookclubs around town.

50 Books a year challenge: Nailed it! I’ll share my reading list soon.

Snail mail friend: Fail mail

Volunteer: Who’s got the time?

Fitness-

Kickboxing: The gym offers one class…during the day. One day a week. Fail.

Self-defense: Can’t defend myself. Fail

Yoga: Almost daily. Is it supposed to hurt when I stretch?

More 5 & 10k obstacle course racing: I finished the Warrior Dash again. Next year I want to do a minimum of 3

Consistent
training: Working out with Tracy is mutually beneficial. Accountability
may be the one thing I needed to maintain this.

Consistent
nutritional training: Really been enjoying more meals at home. Eating
out is becoming frustrating and disappointing. This is making my
decision to eat in easier

Hashing: I’m done for this season. My foot injury sidelined me.

Hiking: I want to explore more but again, foot. Time to hit some light, low elevation trails.

Geocaching: Will I renew my premium membership that is due at the end of this month? Lets find out.

Meditation: Ommm… this has been beneficial but not consistent.

Creative-

Complete
my book: I have been enjoying the process so far but It won’t get done
this year. There is too much I want to include and that involves more
research. Besides…still working on an ending.

Photo essay on a topic I am passionate about: Cold, crisp nights will help me round out my Tulsa After Dark series for the year.

Video log every month: This is so easy and yet it hasn’t been done.

Leave inspirational notes everywhere:

Year in photos album: Cannot wait to see what 2018 memories I’ll have at the EOY. I will work on it and display here soon.

Shoot more film: Film
is a precious commodity. A costly commodity. Sure, the Fuji camera is
fun but at almost $1.50 a sheet? I am convinced that I will buy a Canon
35mm soon though. It’ll be cheaper

DAM: I
have all the DSLR photos organized into yearly folders. Finally. Now to
sort the wheat from the chaff. Oh, and since I shut down Google photos, I
need to organize and integrate all these mobile pics from the years
too. I just doubled my work!

2018′s GHR has been about 50% successful. I’ll need to re-work some of these goals into something more manageable apparently. Overall, I think this was a positiv rebuilding year from a shitty 2017. Looking forward to an even better 2019. See you on 2/2!

Distraction-Free Reading

When and how does anyone make the time? The simple answer is deliberately. There are plenty of mind-numbing, time-wasting activities out there but who wouldn’t want to get something out of it?

One helpful tip is that “Airplane Mode” on your device works just as well
on the ground. That’ll help you with distraction-free reading.

I can say I have accomplished another one of my groundhog resolutions in finishing over 50 books this year. Next year I may limit to something much less and even more deliberate. I also want to invest in more physical books instead of digital copies.

Because another goal for next year is practicing marginalia, the art of marking up one’s book with notes in the margins. I consider it a dialogue with the author and would invest myself back into the book as opposed to reading it and moving on to the next one, learning almost nothing.

This, I think, will make for the best, distraction free and deliberate way to enjoy books.

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11/11 GHR Check-In!

Time to evaluate my progress for my Groundhog Resolutions, the 10th
annual attempt at creating life-long habits for myself. I’ve discovered
that right after the end of the year holidays I am not mentally or
physically capable of sticking with resolutions for the upcoming new
year. I need a break so I take the whole month of January off to reflect
and plan and start on 2/2 instead of 1/1.

I’ve got one more month (12/12) to wrap all this up until Groundhogs Day 2019.

Fun-

Get another tattoo: Coming soon

More camping: Waiting on warmer weather

More skinny dipping: Think I’ll have to skip that this year

Learn Spanish more fluently: Downloaded the Duolingo app for practice but haven’t used it. Will work with the MissAdventurer

Join a book club: No decent bookclubs around town.

50 Books a year challenge: According to Amazon and the library, I’ve read 46 so far. I’ll share my reading list next month.

Snail mail friend: Fail mail

Volunteer: Who’s got the time?

Fitness-

Kickboxing: The gym offers one class…during the day. One day a week. Fail.

Self-defense: Can’t defend myself. Fail

Yoga: Almost daily. Is it supposed to hurt when I stretch?

More 5 & 10k obstacle course racing: I finished the Warrior Dash again. Next year I want to do a minimum of 3

Consistent training: Working out with Tracy is mutually beneficial. Accountability may be the one thing I needed to maintain this.

Consistent nutritional training: Really been enjoying more meals at home. Eating out is becoming frustrating and disappointing. This is making my decision to eat in easier

Hashing: I’m done for this season. My foot injury sidelined me.

Hiking: I want to explore more but again, foot. Time to hit some light, low elevation trails.

Geocaching: I want to find at least ten more caches before year end. Will I renew my premium membership? Lets find out.

Meditation: Ommm… this has been beneficial but not consistent.

Creative-

Complete my book: I have been enjoying the process so far. It won’t get done this year. There is too much I want to include and that involves more research. Besides…still working on an ending.

Photo essay on a topic I am passionate about: Cold, crisp nights will help me round out my Tulsa After Dark series for the year.

Video log every month: This is so easy and yet it hasn’t been done.

Leave inspirational notes everywhere:

Year in photos album: Cannot wait to see what 2018 memories I’ll have at the EOY.

Shoot more film: Film is a precious commodity. A costly commodity. Sure, the Fuji camera is fun but at almost $1.50 a sheet? I am convinced that I will buy a Canon 35mm soon though. It’ll be cheaper

DAM: I have all the DSLR photos organized into yearly folders. Finally. Now to sort the wheat from the chaff. Oh, and since I shut down Google photos, I need to organize and integrate all these mobile pics from the years too. I just doubled my work!

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